power upBy Dr. Mittie Cannon, Director of Training and Workforce Development for Robins & Morton As we celebrate Women in Construction Week from March 6-12, we should use this as an opportunity to promote construction careers to women of all ages. It is important to have this conversation early with young girls and their mothers as they start to think about career choices. I was recently motivated to partner with Girls Inc. of Central Alabama and Central Six Development Council to put together an all-new event called Power UP: It’s a Mother Daughter Thing! Power UP was created to familiarize middle and high school girls with careers in the construction industry at an early age so they are aware of the opportunities available to them. As a woman in the construction industry, it is important to me to not only educate, engage and encourage girls and their mothers about career pathways in the construction industry, but also to introduce them to successful women in these roles. Attendees will hear from Kayleen McCabe, host of DIY Network’s Rescue Renovation. McCabe is a licensed contractor and 2009 winner of DIY’s Stud Finder competition. I know that in order to get girls interested in construction we need parent buy-in, which is why the event is a mother-daughter thing. Power UP is designed to be a small event – only 50 spots – to ensure that mothers and daughters receive quality, one-on-one attention. During the event, mothers and daughters will visit four different stations to learn about higher education, talk with contractors, conduct hands-on activities and participate in a panel discussion led by successful women in the industry. Our goal with Power UP is to inspire mothers and daughters to be empowered by the construction industry. This collaborative effort creates partnerships at all levels and removes barriers as factors in developing a diversified and stronger construction industry workforce. The topic of women in construction has always been true to my heart, and I want Power UP to be an industry model for other contractors to replicate. Women are an untapped resource in our industry and can be the solution to construction’s growing workforce challenges.

Power UP: It's a Mother-Daughter Thing! When: March 22 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Where: Alabama Workforce Training Center in Birmingham, Alabama For more information, visit byf.org/events. Deadline to apply is March 15

2016WW_roundNCCER and its Build Your Future initiative are proud to celebrate Women in Construction Week with the National Association of Women in Construction from March 6-12. Women in Construction Week celebrates the achievements of women in the construction industry and increases the awareness of construction career choices for women.

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NCCER develops standardized construction and maintenance curricula and assessments with portable credentials. These credentials are tracked through NCCER’s National Registry which allows organizations and companies to track the qualifications of their craft professionals and/or check the qualifications of possible new hires. The National Registry also assists craft professionals by maintaining their records in a secure database.